With Electric cars becoming more and more popular, there are many questions on how exactly these vehicles work, particularly in regards to charging systems, safety and power. The Mii electric has a combined cycle range of up to 260 km and its 61 kw of power enables it to accelerate from 0 to 50 km/h in 3.9 seconds. Today's electric vehicles are more sustainable, have a lower cost per kilometre and deliver the same, if not better, performance.
But how do they work?
It all starts with electricity, alternating currents and direct currents combined. Electric vehicles can be charged using either a domestic electric network or at a fast charging station. The difference is that domestic current is alternating, while fast charging is direct current meaning different connectors are required. “The Mii electric features a combined system that allows for both types of charging. The time needed at home will depend on the contracted power or whether wallboxes are used. When using fast chargers, the charging time can be more than 5 times lower”, says Francesc Sabaté, the head of Energy System Development at SEAT.
High-voltage safety. If the car is being charged from a domestic AC network, the electricity first passes through the charger located under the engine, via the charging cable. As this is a high-voltage system, the entire circuit has high safety measures. “The batteries of the Mii electric are continuously checking the parameters of the entire system. If a measurement does not meet the set levels during a check, the system automatically disconnects”, ensures Francesc.
By converting the current, the charger ensures that only direct current reaches the battery. It transforms the current supplied by the domestic network. If the vehicle is charged with direct current from a fast system, it does not go through this phase and goes directly to the battery.
The current has now reached its destination, the battery. The battery is divided into modules, which are divided into cells. The advantage of this system is that if one of the modules fails, it can be replaced independently without affecting the rest of the battery components. “In contrast to fuel-burning cars, electric cars consume less in the city and recover energy when braking, which is why the Mii electric has a range of up to 260 km in combined cycle, and up to 360 km when only driven in the city”, explains Santi Castellá, the head of Electromobility at SEAT.
The electric propulsion e-Motor can now be started. This converts the three-phase voltage into motive power and once in operation, consistent power is maintained over almost the entire load level range. Unlike vehicles equipped with a combustion engine, full power is delivered from the start with electric cars. In the case of the Mii electric, it delivers 61 kW (83 hp) of power and 212 Nm of torque, enabling it to accelerate from 0 to 50 km/h in 3.9 seconds.